Miss Lyss will be eight in March. She’s looking forward to this birthday as much as she has all the others, because eight is so much closer to thirteen, which is so much closer to being a TEENAGER. Teenager is always said in all caps, with a reverence some use for prayer. And I have to stop and do a double check that she isn’t already a teenager, because she sure acts like one sometimes. Already she sighs, rolls her eyes and has that tone. You know, that “oh my God, you have no idea just how tough it is dealing with your dumb ass, Mom” tone.
I’ve enjoyed her being seven. Second grade has given her a little more individuality, and she’s found her niche in school I think. Miss Lyss is a Brain. But a Brain with style. She’s started developing her own taste in clothes (actual taste, not the former “if it’s shiny or neon, I’ll wear it” of years past), books, and music. She’s on the Hannah Montana bandwagon, as well as the High School Musical (both of them) kick. The latter comes from her early love of Grease, passed down by me. We share a love of music and musicals, me and my long legged girl. We share a lot, really, but her personality outshines mine in so many ways. She’s far from shy and introverted; she’ll befriend anyone and talk to everyone. She’s still sort of in the stage of wanting to be just like me, but that’s passing. Too fast, that’s passing.
Seven, for me, will be remembered as the year of the Talk. Or at least parts of it. She had a lot of questions after the baby came, naturally. Miss Lyss has a lot of questions about everything; the kid absorbs knowledge like nothing I’ve ever seen. She wants to know it all, in detail, right this second. So she wanted to know about the baby, and why her friend’s mommy’s baby did not come out of her belly like ours did. I attempted to explain it away with vaguely telling her I had to have a C-section, which is an operation, because some babies come that way. She nodded and I thought I was home free. A pause, then…
… “Where do the rest of them come out?”
As awful as it sounds, I was half tempted (in my unpreparedness and desperation) to tell her I simply didn’t know. No clue, sorry kid, see ya later. But I’ve always said that I would answer my kids’ questions openly and honestly. I didn’t have that openness with my own mom, and I remember some of the questions I had and didn’t always get the answers to.
So I took a deep breath and attempted to fumble my way through an explanation that would be non-graphic, not scary and yet informative. Which led to “ok, so how did she get in there?” Again, more fumbling.
Her reactions were priceless though. “Why would anyone want to do that anyway? Gross!” My exact thought when I first learned the mechanics of it all.
My reaction? The exact same as my own mother’s: “Remember that in ten years or so, kid.”